November 13, 2013
Stecken Cologne

Cologne. Nottingham. Two cities never compared. Until now….

As the next two weeks sees brand new Urban Outfitters shops opening up in both Euro-cities, what better way to celebrate the two cosmopolitan hives of adventure than give you a handy city guide to each? For the hottest spots to eat, drink and stare at art (probably while eating and drinking), read on.



Cologne: There’s no shortage of galleries when it comes to culture vulture capital, Cologne. Streetwear enthusiasts, make a beeline to one-stop trainer spot, the Sneakermuseum (pictured) currently host to AIR MAX 87 – HYPE AND HISTORY. Elsewhere, there’s 30Works for street art aficionados and those who like to ruminate on their Rockwell with a little tipple, will find pints and paintings at the eloquently titled Arty Farty.

Nottingham: Arts, crafts and a generous slice of cake are all on offer at the free-for-entry Harley Gallery. See Roald Dahl illustrator, Quentin Blake’s work until Jan 2014 and transport back to salad days of reading The BFG under a night light.

Credit: Boilermaker Instagram


Cologne: Far from the tourist traps, down a beaten path and through its graffiti splattered doorway, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Stecken (top image) is little more than Cologne’s resident crack den. In fact, inside its warmly lit four walls lives a vibrant hip-hop club where – thanks to its er, intimate setting – you’ll make new friends in no time. Warning: not one for hygiene fanatics.

Nottingham: ‘Sometimes it’s best to hide in plain sight’ – a maxim proved by secret bar Boilermaker (pictured). Despite its appearance as an Ideal Boiler shop, make your way through the door and transport yourself to a throwback American speakeasy with bitters from New Orleans and residencies from the likes of Sailor Jerrys and Monkey Shoulder. Brace yourself.

Salon Schmitz


Cologne: Salon Schmitz (pictured) are not only providing the ~virtually~ infinite flow of beer at next week’s UO Cologne store opening, but you’ll be pleased to know, thanks to its chilled out vibe and comfy-as-a-cloud sofas, they’ve also built a rep for themselves as one of the city’s most adored retro-cafés over a coffee, cocktail or one of their house brand beers.

Nottingham: If you love tea more than life itself (of course you do) then make your way to Lee Rosy Tea, who serve up a nice helping of Darjeeling with a helping of movie nights, cosy gigs and creative workshops to make you feel exactly like you’re living in a Richard Curtis film.

Studio 672


Cologne: Nestled in the Stadtgarden complex in downtown Cologne, the legendary Studio 672 (pictured) is the sort of place where you can pop, lock n’ glock to hip-hop or move your body to the world renowned Cologne Sessions, hosting house DJs from around the world all in a hotbox basement bar. To quote the famous wordsmith Nelly, it’s gonna get hot in herre.

Nottingham: Billing itself as ‘Nottingham’s favourite venue’, the Rescue Rooms is no perpetrator of baseless braggadocio. The site has form with past performances from Happy Mondays, Bloc Party and Nouvelle Vague, while this month welcomes electro duo New Yorkers MS MR (18th Nov). Go wild.

Look out for our UO Nottingham and UO Cologne events coming up…